Aqua Fauna Research Logo

Peacock Eel

Author : Efrain Silva

You’ve probably already heard of the peacock, but I do not think you have ever heard of the peacock eel, am I correct? I thought so. Well, there is no need to stress out, if you are considering getting one….or even if you have just heard its name for the first time as you read this paragraph. I am about to tell you some things about this amazing creature, so sit down and take notes….

This special marine creature has a unique name, given in terms of its scientific nature and terminology — and that full name is Macrognathus siamensis. Some also prefer to call it the striped peacock eel, its stripes being beautiful and rare. Mastacembelidae is the family name it comes from. Now, when you’re out in the waters, or perhaps even looking at a show tank (or even someone else’s home aquarium), and you see this creature, you will more than likely witness it swimming at bottom levels (it likes the bottom of the bottom, to be precise, or as some say, the bottom of the barrel).

Got a pen and paper to take some notes, or do you have a good memory? Its ideal water temperature range is 72 - 82 F. Its diet, also, can either be flakes, freeze - dried preserved goodies or even frozen selections. When this eel is hungry, it can eat so many live foods in the wild, such as plankton, glass worms, earth worms, brine shrimp, tubifex worms, blood worms, and more. An appetite is an appetite, and this eel will make it known! Make no mistake about it.

You’ll want at least a 40 - gallon size tank for this bad boy, if not an even bigger one (40 gallons being the minimum you ought to think of). Get some driftwood, some rocks, and hey, a few (but not too many) plants to decorate the interior of its home (hopefully all setup before dropping in the peacock eel to its new environment). The more cozy its home is, the longer it’ll stick around (better for its life span and all).

This eel comes from Thailand. It’s come a long way. Now, people sell it everywhere online or even in participating store locations (I know the Denver Zoo and the Denver Aquarium both feature this little guy, where everyone can see him swimming about, and also read more about him on his rightful placard displayed outside his tank).

Also, eels like this one love to get a good workout in, and by this, I mean not only swimming. But I also refer to digging. Eels love to dig! Watch out for uprooting, by instead putting in some potted plants (live ones, if you can).